Staffan Liljas is a Swedish bass who found his passion for opera later in life, getting his degree in opera at the age of 39. In the summer of 2019 he was Polyphemus in Händel’s Acis & Galatea at Confidencen in Stockholm. This superlatively reviewed performance was broadcast by Swedish National Television. In the spring of 2019, he performed Sarastro in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte with Labopéra D’Alsace. In the summer of 2018, he performed Davenaut in Marschner’s Der Vampyr at Läckö Slottsopera and that spring, he performed the bass solo in Vivier’s Journal at the Stockholm Concert Hall.
In the summer of 2017, he performed a critically lauded Sharpless in Puccini’s Madama Butterfly at Skånska Operan. In 2017 he was also Ben in a production of Menotti’s The Telephone in Stockholm. In 2016, he was part of two acclaimed opera performances in Sweden, first as the Badger in Janacek’s The cunning little vixen at Norrlandsoperan, and then in Ligetiland at Folkoperan in Stockholm – a performance with music by György Ligeti, where he performed Ligeti’s Aventures together with KammarensembleN. In 2015, he was Don Pedro in Läckö Slottsoperas highly praised production of Berlioz’ Beatrice et Benedict. In addition, he was Marco in Gianni Schicchi in a production in The Netherlands. In the summer of 2014 he sang his first Alberich in Wagner’s Das Rheingold in Oslo.
Staffan graduated the master’s programme at the University College of Opera in Stockholm in the summer 2012. In College, Staffan has performed Banco in Verdi’s Macbeth and Gianni Schicchi in Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi. He has performed as part of the Young Artist Programme at Drottningholms Slottsteater in 2011 as Don Alfonso in Mozart’s Così fan Tutte and in 2012 as Ercole and Oreste in Cavalli’s Il Giasone. Staffan has also performed scenes from Berg’s Wozzeck as Wozzeck, Wagner’s Siegfried as Wotan, Mozart’s Entführung aus dem Serail as Osmin, and Puccini’s Tosca as Scarpia.
After college, Staffan was part of first performances of three newly written operas, among them Carl Unander-Scharin’s experimental I sing the body electric with performances in Stockholm and Cape Town, South Africa. Staffan has a great love for contemporary music and loves the challenge of interpreting a piece for the first time.
Staffan has wide-ranging musical interests, and is equally at home on the operatic and concert stages. He performs music by the early masters such as Purcell, Händel and Bach with equal pleasure and ease as classical and romantic repertoire by Brahms, Mozart, Verdi, and Wagner and newly written music by composers such as Alban Berg, György Ligeti, Unander-Scharin and others. Staffan is highly regarded for his warm timbre, excellent diction and stage presence in both dramatic and comedic roles.